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Engineering works to shut West Norfolk rail line

Launch of new trains at King's Lynn Railway Station
Launch of new trains at King's Lynn Railway Station

Rail services to and from West Norfolk are set to be halted for several days next month because of engineering works.

Passengers will have to find alternative ways to travel between Lynn and Ely from February 12 to 16 under the schedule outlined by industry officials.

Notice of the planned works was issued via the National Rail Enquiries website.

It said: “Major engineering work is taking place between Ely and Kings Lynn, closing all lines from Monday to Friday.

“As a result, no trains will run on this route. Buses will replace trains between Ely and Kings Lynn, calling at all stations.”

The work, which includes bridge renovations and track maintenance, will affect Great Northern services from Lynn to London King’s Cross, plus some Greater Anglia journeys to Liverpool Street.

But, with latest data indicating continuing growth of passenger levels in the borough, the closure is likely to cause problems for thousands of travellers across the region.

The state of West Norfolk’s rail services has become a big issue in recent months, amid widespread concern over timetable plans that will see many journeys from West Norfolk to the capital made slower.

The announcement also coincides with the implementation of substantial increases in rail fares.

The cost of tickets is rising by an average of 3.4 per cent from Tuesday, adding around £80 to the cost of an annual season ticket between Lynn and Cambridge and £250 to some similar tickets for travel to London.

Campaigners will stage a demonstration outside Lynn’s station on Tuesday morning against the hikes, as part of a nationwide day of action by supporters of calls to return the rail network to public ownership.

The Fen Line Users Association (FLUA) recently called for a significant fare cut because of what it claims are broken promises over service improvements.

But industry chiefs insist the increases will allow them to continue the work needed to expand services to meet the demand identified by FLUA and other bodies.

However, politicians and business leaders have warned that current growth patterns could be jeopardised without urgent action.

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